HOUSTON — Texans coach Bill O’Brien said he doesn’t expect wide receiver Keke Coutee (ankle) or backup quarterback AJ McCarron (thumb) to be back “soon” for the Texans.

“Tomorrow? No. A week from now? Probably not,” O’Brien said. “And so we’ll just keep playing it by ear.”

Coutee left the Texans’ preseason opener against the Packers with an ankle injury after he was tackled in the second quarter. Coutee was checked out by the medical staff and helped off the field. The second-year receiver later sent, and then deleted, a tweet saying, “Y’all can say what ya’ll want to behind this screen, but ya’ll never spent a day in my shoes. Minor setback, nothing major!!”

During training camp, receiver DeAndre Hopkins called Coutee “one of the most improved players on this offense,” and quarterback Deshaun Watson said he’s noticed that the slot receiver has learned how to read defenses and “do exactly what the offense has been wanting him to do.”

Coutee missed all but six games last season because of injuries to both hamstrings. In those six games, he caught 28 passes for 287 yards and a touchdown.

McCarron injured his thumb during the Texans’ joint practice with the Packers on Tuesday. Had he not been injured, the backup quarterback was expected to start in the Texans’ first preseason game.

Houston signed quarterback Jordan Ta’amu, an undrafted free agent from Mississippi, on Wednesday but quarterback Joe Webb played the entire preseason game.


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